Giants injury update after Week 5 loss to Cowboys, including Saquon Barkley avoiding worst-case scenario

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Saquon Barkley on cart vs Cowboys
Saquon Barkley on cart vs Cowboys

Saquon Barkley was carted off the field in Dallas on Sunday and was spotted after the game on crutches and wearing a walking boot on his injured left ankle. But he appears to have avoided the worst-case scenario, and he might even be back on the field soon.

The initial diagnosis was that Barkley suffered only a sprained left ankle during the Giants’ 44-20 loss to the Cowboys, according to an NFL source. And the hope is that he might only have to miss two-to-three games. There is even a chance he could be back sooner than that, depending on the severity and the results of further medical tests back in New York on Monday morning.

But there appeared to be no break and no torn ligaments, which could have ended his season for a second straight year.

That was certainly the fear given the ugly visuals when Barkley stepped on the foot of Cowboys cornerback Jourdan Lewis after the end of a play late in the first quarter. Barkley’s ankle bent in a disturbing and awkward way. Then the Fox cameras caught a shot of his ankle with his shoe and sock off, and it looked like it had swollen to the size of a baseball.

But if it’s just a “low” ankle sprain, which is what NFL Network reported, he might only have to miss one game. A high ankle sprain – which is the more serious of the two – cost Barkley only three games back in 2019.

Of course, when he came back that year and was touted as a fast healer, it was more than a month before he started to look like the same player. So the Giants will have to be careful when Barkley returns. He’s still just a year removed from the torn ACL that ended his 2020 season and now he’s coming back from an ankle injury, too. Whenever he returns, it makes sense that he’ll have to be eased back in.

Barkley, of course, wasn’t the only Giants player who got hurt on Sunday. Here’s the latest on the others, too:

Quarterback Daniel Jones He suffered a concussion late in the first half when he lowered his head and absorbed a helmet-to-helmet hit in a collision with Cowboys linebacker Jabril Cox. Jones looked woozy and had to be held up by an official and then a Giants trainer, before he was helped to a cart and then driven to the locker room.

A team source said he was “doing better” after the game, but there’s just no way to tell how quickly he will recover. He is now in the NFL’s concussion protocol and there are steps that have to be followed before he even returns to practice. Even in the best-case scenario, he won’t be cleared to practice until late in the week. There’s definitely time for him to clear the protocol so he can play next Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams, but not much. If he is OK, it’ll still be close.

Receiver Kenny GolladayHe said he hyper-extended his knee when he collided with Cowboys cornerback Trevon Diggs in the first quarter and tried to play through it as long as he could. But it was bothering him too much, so he didn’t come out of the locker room after halftime. The fact that Golladay spoke to the media after the game is a good sign, but his status won’t be clear until after he undergoes an MRI on Monday.

Receiver Kadarius Toney He was spotted by reporters being carted to the X-Ray room after the game, undoubtedly to have his right ankle/foot checked out after a defender landed on it while he was making a catch along the sidelines late in the game. Toney came back and continued his monster game – 10 catches, 189 yards. In fact, he didn’t leave until he was ejected for throwing a punch at Cowboys safety Damontae Kazee. He might be more in danger of missing next week’s game due to a suspension than an injury.

Left tackle Andrew ThomasHe was active, but didn’t play due to a foot injury that he suffered in the game last week. It was clearly bothering him during practice last week and he was spotted with a bad limp every day he was out there. He worked out before the game, but the results weren’t good and Judge said he was only available in case of emergency. They seem to have hope that he’ll be ready for next Sunday, but they won’t know until they see him at practice on Wednesday.

Receivers Sterling Shepard and Darius SlaytonThey both missed their second straight game on Sunday, and the fact that they didn’t practice all week doesn’t make it seem like either is close to returning. Hamstrings, as everyone always says, are tricky, though. Shepard, at least, seems likely to at least try to practice this week, but the Giants won’t know what to expect until they see him on the field.

Safety Jabrill PeppersHe missed the game with a hamstring injury, too, and also didn’t practice all week. He also got hurt on the sidelines, getting head-butted in the mouth by rookie Toney when the rookie angrily popped off the bench when trainers were checking on his foot injury. That didn’t appear to cause a serious injury, though.